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CBI Director Alok Verma ousted by PM-led panel; posted as DG Fire Services

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

was Thursday removed unceremoniously as the after a high-powered panel led by found that he had not been functioning with integrity expected of him.

Verma, whose fixed tenure of two years was to end on January 31, is the in the 55-years of the CBI's history to face such action, officials said.

He has been posted as General Fire Service, Civil Defence and Home Guards, under the

The charge of the CBI has been given to M Nageshwar Rao, a government order issued on Thursday evening said.

The panel which comprised of in Lok Sabha Mallikarjun and Justice A K Sikri, appointed by Chief Justice of Ranjan Gogoi as his nominee, had met here Thursday evening after which a decision for Verma, a 1979-batch IPS officer, was taken.

has expressed his dissent to the decision which was taken by a majority of 2:1.

There were eight counts of charges against Verma in the CVC report presented before the panel which included alleged attempts to induct tainted officers, compromising probe in the case related to controversial meat exporter Moin Qureshi, IRCTC scam among others, they said.

The claimed that it had found evidence of influencing of probe in the case and there were intercepts of RAW, an external snooping agency, that Rs 2 crore had changed hands.

The CVC was of the view that his conduct in the case was suspicious and there was a prima facie case against him, and wanted a criminal investigation to be conducted in the case.

In the IRCTC case, the CVC felt that it can be reasonably concluded that Verma deliberately excluded a name from the FIR, for reasons best known to him.

The CVC also found instances of wilful non-production of record and fabrication of record.

The committee also took note of Verma's attempts to induct officers of doubtful integrity in the CBI.

The CVC said that he had been given ample opportunity to present his case before the CVC, in presence of Justice (retd) Patnaik.

The officials said the panel, barring Kharge, felt that investigation, including criminal probe, was necessary, in some cases, and his continuation as was not desirable, and he should be transferred.

The meeting of the committee was convened Wednesday which lasted nearly 30 minutes.

It was convened again on Thursday at the residence of Modi at 7 Lok Kalyan Marg at around 4.30 PM.

The meeting continued for nearly two hours with strongly arguing for giving a chance to Verma to present his case before the committee on the allegations levelled by the CVC against him.

However, the and Justice Sikri did not agree with his position making clear his ouster from the agency.

Reacting to the development, the said, "By removing from his position without giving him the chance to present his case, PM Modi has shown once again that he's too afraid of an investigation, either by an independent or by Parliament via JPC."

A delegation of former ministers and along with activist had met Verma on October 4, 2018 with plea of registering an FIR in the Rafale aircraft purchase deal.

Verma was sent on forced leave by the government in a late-night controversial order on October 23, 2018 in the wake of a feud between him and his which had intensified after Asthana was booked on corruption charges by the CBI on October 15, 2018.

He had challenged the order in the which had quashed the government order Tuesday and reinstated him with a condition that the high-powered selection committee will decide his fate in a week.

Verma had joined the office Wednesday after 77 days of forced leave set aside by the

The apex court had said any further decision against Verma, who was scheduled to retire on January 31, would be taken by the high-powered committee which selects and appoints the CBI director.

The in the Vineet Narayan judgment had fixed a minimum tenure of two years for the CBI director to give him immunity from any political interference. Later, through the Lokpal Act, the process of selecting the CBI director was handed over to a selection committee.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, January 10 2019. 21:41 IST
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